Valentine's Day Feature: Footballers' Most Romantic Gestures
Friday is the Feast of Saint Valentine, a day in which couples all around the world show their appreciation for one another via lavish gifts, expensive meals or wilting flowers purchased from a petrol station forecourt.
In celebration of the day of love, B/R has compiled some of the most romantic gestures from the beautiful game.
Raymond Domenech's Marriage Proposal
When he should have been apologising for France's 2-0 defeat to Italy that concluded their terrible Euro 2008 campaign, manager Raymond Domenech commandeered his post-match interview to propose to his girlfriend.
"I have only one project, which is to marry Estelle," he said, referring to his long-term partner and football talk show presenter Estelle Denis. "I told myself there are beautiful things in life. It's good to tell someone that you love her."
In the broadcast that followed Domenech's cringeworthy bout of romance, Denis refused to say whether she would accept the proposal, according to the Daily Mail.
The whole episode probably sounded a lot more romantic in Domenech's head before he attempted it.
Luis Suarez's Goal Celebration
Whenever Luis Suarez scores a goal, he kisses either his hand or his wrist.
The Uruguayan isn't paying tribute to the appendage with which he cheated Ghana out of the World Cup, but is sending a loving message to his wife and kids.
The prolific striker recently explained on Liverpool's YouTube channel that a kiss of the wrist is a dedication to daughter Delfina, while a kiss of his ring finger is a romantic salute to childhood sweetheart Sofia Balbi.
Gareth Bale's Big Heart
Much like Suarez, Gareth Bale also has a goal celebration gesture dedicated to his childhood sweetheart.
According to the Associated Press (via Sports Illustrated), the world's most expensive player said in 2010 that his heart-shaped hands gesture is directed at girlfriend Emma Rhys-Jones, with whom he had daughter Alba Violet in 2012.
Bale has also had the gesture successfully trademarked, according to Yahoo! Eurosport.
Who said romance is dead?
The Anfield Wedding Proposal
On the 2012 Channel 4 TV show The Wedding Proposal, a Liverpool fan named Jade asked her boyfriend, Andi, to marry her while they were on an official Anfield Tour.
Since it was a leap year, she was the one who got down on one knee, and now Andi will never have to walk alone.
Proposals at sporting venues don't always go to plan, though. This Houston Rockets NBA fan learnt that the hard way.
The Fake Injury Proposal
Fake injuries are something we may have seen from a few players named in this list, but this one was performed with a romantic ulterior motive.
A former player at California's Fresno Pacific University engineered himself into a game with his girlfriend and went down clutching his leg in pain. When his beau came to comfort him, he sprung up onto his knee and popped the question.
Leave your ideas for romantic football gestures in the comments and follow me on Twitter. Happy Valentine's Day!
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